Thursday, October 29, 2009

No comment

A few months ago, I stumbled upon a new blog I thought was really cool. The writer was starting to home school her kids for the first time.

"Ahhh, this woman is creative and has a great plan," I thought. "I can really relate to her."

It turns out we had sooooo much in common.

I mean, she had published several books, and I had thought about writing a book.

She has like 2,000 subscribers and I have, well... I have some.

She lives in a house in a place with a beautiful climate and awesome scenery. And I live in a house.

With all the common traits we share, we were destined to become the best of bloggy friends. I started reading her faithfully. I commented on every post. I subscribed. I was devoted to our relationship.

But, alas. As often seems to happen in this big bloggy world, I never heard from her. No visits. No page views. No comments. Nothing.

"I'm sure she's just busy," I told myself. "No big deal."

But then she did it.

She wrote a post asking each of her readers to post a comment to introduce themselves.

"I HAVE BEEN COMMENTING FOR MONTHS!" I thought in my completely mature, non-sixth graderish, not-the-least-bit-hormonal, I-have-an-actual-life way. "If she wanted to know who I am, she could have clicked on my profile a long time ago. No way am I going to respond to her request."

So, I dumped her. We're through. That's it.

No comment.

(I'm sure I really showed her a thing or two.)

Just by chance, there seemed to be a trend going around the blogsphere that week. Everywhere I turned, writers were asking their readers to post a comment with their basic info: Name, city and sometimes even age.

I have done the same thing several times. And I'm sure I've annoyed a few people who were sitting at home, lashing out at me with the same passive-aggressive fervor I unleashed on my bloggy " new best friend" who had no clue I even existed.

But it made me really start thinking about why people leave comments.

The main reason I leave comments is to spread some love. I know. Plain and simple. But if people take the time to visit me, I try to reciprocate. (And I know I don't always do a good job, but I do try!)

For those bloggers I know and like in real life, I leave comments so they don't feel like they are just talking to thin air. If they are taking that time to express themselves, I feel I should take a second just to say, "I'm listening." (Again, no one has time to do this all the time, but I try when I can.)

And, of course, I comment because people write things that stir something up in me... an emotion, a thought or a memory. Sometimes people write about a topic about which I feel very strongly, and I can't resist leaving a comment.

I always think it's interesting to see what generates the most comments. It's usually what I least expect. Shoes seem to be popular, while life and death... well, I think sometimes we let things sink in but don't have the words to comment.

I know that MOST people don't comment. Lots of people have visited my blog on a regular basis, but have never left a comment. Knowing that, I feel good when even one or two people respond with a nice word or reaction to what I've written.

All of this makes me wonder, what does it for you? Why do you comment? Or why DON'T you comment?

And when you comment do you have an expectation that you will get a response? Do you like to hear from that person by e-mail or in the comments section?

I want to be more caring toward the people who are so nice to comment. I know you don't have to, so I don't want to take you for granted.

Oh, and by the way... it's perfectly fine if you just want to say:

"No comment."


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11 comments:

Gretta said...

Guilty! I'm always checking your blog on my sidebar for new posts, and often revisit old ones....especially to get recipes you posted! :) I get lazy about the commenting! So sorry about that! I'm so excited to have a friend to read about it....the other blogs I've followed in the past have been strangers, until recently, a couple more friends have started blogs. Your everday life is quite refreshing to read about!! And you write about it so eloquently! :)

hellolittlepeepers said...

I comment when I really want to say something. I read in blog reader so I he to take an extra step to open up your page to comment. I know. Lazy. I tell myself that is why I can post 5 times without a single comment, not that my blog is horribly boring and nobody reads it besides my mom. :)

everydayMOM said...

I don't want to make you feel guilty for not leaving comments!! It's perfectly fine to not comment! I was just curious about how other people think about it. =]

Kacie said...

By the way, i read your blog via blog reader... and have for ages. ;)

I comment on friends' blogs, on discussion posts, or on topics that I'm personally involved in. But I also subscribe to blogs that I think are fun and well-written, like yours. And because I don't know you and I'm in a different life stage, usually I don't have much to input... so I stay quiet.

Sometimes the best posts I read have very few comments on them, and I think that's because sometimes the author has said it all, and we just read and absorb or learn from them. Usually shallow fun posts get the most comments.

The Fritz Facts said...

I love comments, and love leaving them when I know I have something say that will add to the conversation. And sometimes just to say hi if the situation warrents it.

I too had a blogger that didn't acknowledge her commenters, and stopped reading her. The thing of it was, she did when she first started out. Once she get well known she seemed to forget "the little people" that were there from day 1. It is frustrating, but that is why I rarely comment on the "big bloggers" posts, it gets lost in the shuffle.

It is the same on Twitter if you think abot it. The "big bloggers" don't acknowledge they ones that tweet them, only their small circle. Why are you on there if not to connect with OTHER bloggers?

Yes I love to read blogs, but I also like to drive my traffic up. I write too, I have things to say.

Jenny-Jenny said...

It's so funny that you chose today to post about this topic. My sister and I had a huge conversation about this very subject just yesterday. She said it's like a popularity fear in Jr. High hoping someone will say Hi to you in the hall at school. And then that rare occasion when someone really popular says Hi. (like the one time Antique Mommy left a comment on my blog!)

I have different reasons for leaving comments. There are a few real life friends that I leave comments to support them. Some bloggy friends that I comment on because that is our friendship- commenting on each others blogs. And then there are those "famous" blogs... some of them I just comment on because I get traffic that way. Yup I'm guilty of that, but it works.

jen said...

I also comment when something moves me to speak up. I have commented much more lately, though. And I have this tutorial to thank. You can comment from you reader!
I KNOW!!!
here you go:
http://ohamanda.com/2009/09/02/oops-a-firefox-add-ons-tutorial-easycomment-and-better-greader/

Anonymous said...

Sometimes, if I'm asked to comment, I fee pressure and I can't comment. I want to say something meaningful and grand, and nothing comes to my pea-brain!

Other times I am moved, like you said, to comment or I am trying to be supportive.

That's all I know!
:)Lynn

Heather @ Not a DIY Life said...

i read most blogs in a reader and am woefully behind in reading and commenting! (Obviously!)

I comment a) when the blogger has something that resonates with me, and b) when I have time. I don't have as much time to read/comment now that the toddler is so active. Usually only during naptime (now). I try to make my rounds and comment on my fave blogs at least once a week. Others, a little more sporadically. Not that you aren't a fave. You are, but that's the ideal that i don't always meet.

I love it when bloggers acknowledge what I've said in a comment by commenting on my blog, responding in an email, or even chatting with me on Twitter about it. That's what keeps me coming back. There are MANY blogs that I have quit reading because there was no interaction. I blog for the interaction. And I include reading/commenting in "blogging." Others blog for other reasons. So if they don't care for the interaction, then I won't be around just to feed their ego.

Sorry for the long comment. This obviously touched a nerve for me.

Anonymous said...

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